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Canadians Casey Plett, Kai Cheng Thom honoured by Stonewall Literature Awards

Casey Plett

Meanwhile, Elsewhere: Science Fiction and Fantasy from Transgender Writers, a speculative-fiction anthology published by Topside Press, has won the Barbara Gittings Literature Award. Co-edited by Canadian author Casey Plett and American poet Cat Fitzpatrick, the anthology contains 25 contributions by writers from Canada, the U.S., and beyond.

The award, which was presented at the American Library Association’s Midwinter meeting Feb. 11 in Denver, Colorado, is sponsored by the ALA’s Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Round Table, honouring books that exhibit exceptional merit in relation to the gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender experience.

In a Q&A with Q&Q  in advance of the book’s September publication, Plett explained that while she doesn’t come from a spec-fic background, she understood why writers – and, if the award is any indication, readers – are attracted to the genre. “Everyone is drawn to a genre like that for their own fantastical, dreamy, amazing, and lovely reasons,” said Plett. “But when trans writers come to the table, we probably have a certain set of concerns that maybe a lot of other folks don’t have when we imagine what a world might look like – or what we are afraid or hope the world might look like.”

Canadian poet Kai Cheng Thom’s 2017 collection, A Place Called No Homeland (Arsenal Pulp Press), was also named a Stonewall Book of Honor.